We help mining, oil and gas companies adopt business practices that take into account the conflict risks and peace opportunities of their activities, and work with communities and governments to manage and use their natural resources peacefully.

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Introduction: 

Businesses can play a positive role in contributing to peaceful economic development, but at times can also exacerbate tensions and fuel violent conflict.

We help mining, oil and gas companies adopt business practices that take into account the conflict risks and peace opportunities of their activities, and work with communities and governments to manage and use their natural resources peacefully.

We advise and train businesses to assess the risks and impacts of their operations on communities, and promote greater communication between companies and local people, to ensure economic activities do not fuel tensions or violence.

Why: 

Natural resources can provide opportunities to increase economic development in fragile and conflict-affected states.

However, in many cases the lack of effective and inclusive management leads to unchecked and violent competition, increased corruption, damaging socio-economic change and inequity of wealth distribution, leading to greater instability and violence.

Improving the knowledge and understanding of governments, companies and communities of natural resource management, improving the flow of information between them and creating opportunities for dialogue, can help prevent or manage these conflicts.

Moreover, if natural resources are managed in a way that is more equitable, sustainable and inclusive, this can create greater incentives for peace, such as shared material benefits and increased interdependence.

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Doing development ‘right’: Why safeguards matter for peace

Earlier this month The Independent on Sunday featured a piece by its science editor on “aggressive development banks with little interest in protecting the natural world”. In it, the author voiced serious concerns over the scale of new infrastructure projects financed by multilateral development banks (MDBs) in developing countries and their impact on the environment.

Promoting development in Pakistan

International Alert has published two papers on the potential role that the private sector can play in promoting cohesive and sustainable development in Pakistan, with a particular focus on the mining industry.

Aid interventions in South Sudan: Integrating a conflict-sensitive approach

This article was originally published in the International NGO Training and Research Centre's (INTRAC) newsletter, ONTRAC, issue 59, available here. Integrating a conflict-sensitive approach into the operations and projects of institutions and organisations – including governments, humanitarian and development organisations – often results in more sustainable and stable interventions.

Peace blooms in London

International Alert has marked the launch of the first in a new series of peace assessments with a range of engaging events and activities about Kenya in Hoxton Gallery - a converted railway arch in east London.

Peace blooms

To coincide with Valentine’s Day, we are pleased to announce the launch of ‘Peace blooms: Cattle, conflict and the roses of Lake Naivasha’ – a photo exhibition and pop-up flower shop on Kenya.

The World Bank – safeguarding progress towards peace?

Last week the World Bank Safeguards Consultation process arrived in London and International Alert, alongside other civil society organisations, participated in two days of dialogue with the institution on the new draft safeguards framework. Representatives from the UK Department for International Development and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office also participated in the dialogue.

Extracting peace

This paper argues that the government of Liberia’s current approach to managing investment in natural resources is having an adverse effect on the country’s social, political and economic dynamics, which is increasing the risk of conflict.